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Wisconsin Farmers' Institutes / Wisconsin Farmers' Institutes : a hand-book of agriculture
Bulletin No. 11 (1897)

Morgan, Carrie E.
Our public schools,   pp. 145-150 PDF (1.7 MB)


Page 146


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WISCONSIN FARM EBB' INSTITUTE.
ate and patient. Surely the teaehers
cardinal virtue is patience.
School Officers
If there are essential qualities in
the good school-teacher, there are
also essential qualities in the good
school officer. We need our best citi-
zens in these positions. We want not
only good clerks and good financiers,
but men who know something of
school-work, and above all who are
interested in it. It is a source of sin-
cere regret to many schooi officers
that their business requires so much
time, that they cannot give to school
affairs the attention they would glad-
ly give.
Correct knowledge of the state of
affairs in our schools is absolutely
necessary to the proper action of a
school-board, and by correct knowl-
edge is not meant the exaggerated re-
ports of offended school-children, nor
the complaints of angry parents.
There are always two sides to a story.
When personal investigation en the
part of school-boards is impossible,
the teacher's story and the reports of
supervising officers should be weighed
in the balance with current rumors.
In the selection of teachers lies the
most important and the most difficult
duty of the school board. The care
of finances is an important one,
but the proper disposal of pub-
lic  money   affects  merely   the
pocket-books of the people, while
the selection of fit teachers af-
fects the minds and morals of the ris-
ing generation.
The Best Are the Cheapest
It is a well-known fact that there
are to-day more teachers ready for
positions than there are positions to
fill. With this the case there is no
excuse for hiring an unfit teacher.
This is sometimes done through a
false sense of economy on the part of
school-boards. Of two applicants the
cheaper one is often taken and as a
result cheaper work is obtained.
To   is  true   or  co  -w i   mu  in
11t in true ox cours WLbIu nu MAuwU
competition, that our beat teachers
are often forced to work at low sal-
aries, but this should not be so. Good
teachers deserve good salaries. There
is no class of workers in any field
more conscientious, more industrious,
more unselfish than good school-
teachers. The progressive teacher
recognizes the fact that she must
work to keep up with the times.
With our Normal schools and colleges
crowded with would-be teachers, those
who are already in the field or desire
to enter it must redouble their efforts
if they wish to keep well to the front.
The lazy or Indifferent teacher de-
serves to be crowded to the wall.
Politics in School Affairs.
In some places school management
is happily f-ee from political corrup-
tion, in others it is a slave to it. In
some cities in our own state, we are
told, the schools are entirely in the
clutches of politicians and a political
change in administration means a
decided change in the schools.  No
principal or superintendent not eon-
forming to the required political code
is allowed to remain. Surely such a
state of affairs is disgraceful. The
evil effects of such a system upon the
public schools can be appreciated only
by cities suffering from such slavery.
Other cities are more fortunate.
School officers are chosen not for
political reasons, but because they are
believed to be fit persons for the place.
Any person voting for school officers
for other reasons is guilty of doing
great injury to the schools.
Grounds for Disisal
There are but four legitimate rea-
sons for the dismissal of a teacher,-
failure in teaching, failure in
discipline,  lack  of  health  that
seriously  interferes  with  school
work, or proof of a charac-
ter that has a bad inflaence
over the school. When dismissals are
made for personal or political reasons,
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